Elon Musk Offers Battery Advice to Boeing
About two weeks ago, spaceship-and-electric car-maker Elon Musk got in touch with Boeing, whose 787 Dreamliners are grounded because of smoke and fire problems with their powerful lithium-iron batteries. His team had figured out how to tightly pack such batteries into both space-going and earthly vehicles. He was happy to pass along lessons learned. Boeing replied that the situation is “under control,” Musk said.
Now, Boeing appears to have reconsidered. Though it is not saying so explicitly, it seems to be looking at Musk’s main advice—reducing the chance of fire hazard by increasing the space (paywall) between the lithium-ion cells in the battery pack, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The reporting on Musk gets one thing wrong—his Tesla automobiles do not use the lithium-cobalt-oxide chemistry that is in the Dreamliner batteries. They rely on Panasonic nickel-cobalt-aluminum lithium-ion batteries, which may be less volatile.
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